Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Meet the new boss. Not so fast

The Twins on Monday morning issued a press release naming Derek Falvey "executive vice president, chief baseball officer." This is not quite the title we had been led to expect ("president of baseball operations"), but it is an impressive amount of verbiage.

The title is of less importance than the authority, and it may be some time before Falvey gets to wield any authority over the Twins operation. He will remain with the Cleveland Indians until their season is finished, and that may last long into the month.

One cannot blame the Indians for insisting on retaining Falvey for the postseason run. By their description, he has been a crucial component of what may be the trickiest part of analytics -- relying the information to the manager, coaches and players in a way that is accessible and persuasive. Disrupting that arrangement now would hurt the Tribe's chances.

But the clock is ticking, and the Twins are left for now with Rob Antony in what must be an awkward interim position. It was reported over the weekend that Antony is out of the running for the No. 2 job under Falvey, but if the Twins hold to their usual timeline of holding organizational meetings in October, it may well be Antony running the show and making the initial decisions on the 40-man roster, arbitration offers and trade targets. Antony reportedly told Paul Molitor's coaches that their status awaits Falvey's arrival. (Lead owner Jim Pohlad has insisted all along that Molitor will be back as the manager in 2017.)

Falvey should be at the helm well before the deadlines for roster assignments and arbitration offers, but it's not optimum for him to step in well into the process.

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